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December 31, 2016

10 Things to Give Up to be Successful in 2017

by Paden Hughes

Today is the last day of 2016, and a perfect opportunity to sit back and reflect. In doing so, I read a wonderful blog that compelled me to put together this new blog series about what to give up to be successful and healthy.

Taking my collected thoughts from this article, I wanted to re-package the message a little to reflect how giving up the top 10 things from that original list can benefit everyone in our Gymnazo community and anyone looking to improve themselves and their fitness in 2017.

I do not write this from a place of elevation, as though I have arrived at some destination others may envy. I write this from a place as if I am showing you my notes on a book I’m reading and trying to implement in my own life. I am on a mission in life to continually push and grow as a person and to journey intentionally through life and hopefully inspire others to join me.

I believe we humans evolve (for better and for worse). I think we all hold in our hearts an “ideal” version of who we want to be and hope we become. Sometimes to get to the person we want to become it may be wiser to cut out what is unhealthy about our lifestyles and mindsets rather than keep adding to the list of “shoulds.”

So here it goes, 10 Things to Give Up to be Successful in 2017

1. Steer Clear of Unhealthy Habits

Our body is incredible. It is the vesseland vehicle from which we are able to engage with the physical world. We only get one. To take care of this body is critical to so many foundational elements of successful living. It’s critical to managing our energy, healing our bodies through rest, tempering our emotions regardless of the circumstances, and the list goes on. To achieve what we want to achieve, we need our bodies to thrive and get out of the survival mode we often find ourselves in.

At Gymnazo this looks like three things:

  1. Have a clean, whole foods diet. Our food is our fuel. Some say our bodies are like a journal that accurately keeps track of how we treat ourselves and whether we “write it down” or not, it reflects the reality of our lives. So eat clean.
  2. Pursue a socially active lifestyle and train for the ways in which you want your body to perform. We practice today in three planes of motion to push our minds and our bodies to places of performance we never thought were possible.
  3. Make room for rest and recovery. Our bodies’ ability to perform for us and keep up with us is finite. It has a place where it breaks down. Become aware of where this is and when you’ve crossed into territory that leads to dysfunction and pain in the future. Take care of your body. Rest, sleep, slow down and more than anything be kind to yourself and prioritize your healing process.

Successful people know that they cannot serve from a place of emptiness, they cannot hit their goals if they burn out, and they will not be the people they wish to be if they are broken physically. Make 2017 a year where you chose health, because choosing health often means choosing success.

2. Get Rid of the Short Term Mindset

In our female locker room we have a quote on the wall that essentially states

“You only live once, if you do it right, once is enough.”

Our lives are a mere spec in relation to the history of mankind. That is a deep and compelling thought. I remember in grade school seeing a long timeline of all human activity as we know it, and seeing where my life began as a piece of string adding to the tapestry of the human race. Let’s face it, our lives go by quickly.

Successful people have an urgency to how they view time and their investment of this most limited resource. When it comes to health and fitness do we go to Gymnazo to lose 10 pounds to finally love our bodies, or do we go because being disciplined about our health is a part of who we are as people?

If you have a long term mindset, fitness is not seasonal. It’s not connected to our satisfaction when looking at ourselves naked in the mirror. It’s not for times when I have my life in sync and the calendar allows. No, if you are playing the long game, fitness is a daily routine that prepares you to tackle your professional goals, sharpen your willpower to meet challenges in all aspects of life, push your limits and take you to places you’ve only dreamed of. It is a part of your fabric of who you are.

3. Let Go of Your Fear of Failure

I love the phrase “game-changer” because it explains something innovative that changed how we go about doing something. Netflix even has a fascinating series called “Game Changers” that highlight the lives of successful people behind some of the brightest innovations of our world.

What if “game changers” like Thomas Edison, the Wright brothers, Steve Jobs, Leonardo da Vinci, Nikola Tesla and Bill Gates were too afraid to do what they did? The world will never benefit from what we don’t achieve.

One of the cornerstones to humanity is to be brave and push through the fear. Fear is not something we can avoid, but what we do when we are afraid shapes everything.

What would you do if you knew you could not fail? That’s a fascinating question because it removes the cloud of doubt and allows dreams to soar.

In our health and fitness fear often comes in the form of overcompensating, inactivity or stagnation. Fear of pain leads to overly relying on muscle groups to pick up the slack when you are afraid of re-injury. It can feel easier to take the path of least resistance and get through an exercise and move on. But this as we know leads to more harmful movement dysfunction in the future. Fear of hurting ourselves can also lead athletes to stop moving altogether, which has far more harmful effects than just the physical. I’m not saying to ignore concerns you have about what you are doing with your body, but rather to never stop seeking to fix and heal yourself. Fear of not being able to do something can also mean you never try. As Wayne Gretzky famously said,

“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”

At Gymnazo a key element of our coaching is to provide inspiration to each athlete and help encourage them uniquely to push through their fears and start to move bravely and reach new heights. It’s one of the things our members daily appreciate.

Successful people foster a mindset of facing fears and acknowledging them but not being held hostage to them. Let 2017 be your year of courage!

4. Stop Playing the Victim

This is the most compelling thing I’ve personally learned in 2016. In all the professional and personal growth I’ve been seeking, in the books I’ve been reading, and conversations with mentors this theme has emerged clearly as my personal goal for 2017.

Successful people do not play the victim. They do not believe that life happens to them and is out of their control. Rather they believe they have the power to change and take what life throws them and make something marvelous with it. If someone treats you unfairly or you feel wronged, you are not a helpless victim and nor they the tyrannical aggressor. This mindset is unfortunately all around us and it’s dysfunctional and debilitating .

What’s so subversive and sneaky about being a victim is that it feels good for a while. In fact you can milk sympathy from others so fast by casting circumstances as being “out of your control” as if life is playing a cruel joke on you.

But do you really want people to feel sorry for you?

Athletes who come up with excuses for all the reasons they aren’t losing weight and why they just can’t seem to get out of bed and come to their appointment, never seem to reach their goals. Yet we can feel bad thinking they seem to have been dealt such a bad hand in the game of life.

On the other hand we see successful athletes who may also be frustrated with not losing weight and keeping their commitments to their workout schedule, but they don’t make excuses. They take ownership. It’s no one’s fault but something they are actively seeking to change. The ownership never leaves the owner. They do not give excuses, instead they find solutions. That’s the difference in having a successful mindset.

Successful people even if they have thoughts that place them as a victim, they step out of it and step into the role of a creator. You create success and positive outcomes. Successful people believe they are responsible for their life, no matter their starting point, weakness and past failures. Realizing that you are responsible for what happens next in your life is both scary and exciting.

5. Move Past a Fixed Mindset into a Growth Mindset

In Mexico last year Michael started to read a book called “Mindset: a New Psychology of Success” by Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D. The book shares about the two mindsets most people have:

Fixed: Intelligence, personality and talent are fixed and that these alone create success, not necessarily effort.

Growth: Intelligence, personality and talent are not fixed but rather evolving. These basic qualities are cultivated through our efforts.

Essentially having a fixed mindset hinders your ability to succeed because you believe you can’t change your reality. The growth mindset however places a premium on focusing on the journey of becoming rather than being stuck in who you are today. The growth mindset invests time on a daily basis in being curious, acquiring new information, learning from those around them and essentially looking to have their perception challenged so they can evolve thoughtfully.

Successful athletes with a growth mindset are never threatened or defensive with being pushed to do something that is new to them. They get inspired when they come into contact with something new because it could push them to a new level of performance. Growth can be painful. Pushing through the shifts and pain that change can bring in our bodies and lives is not easy, but it does create long-term growth. Successful athletes understand this and embrace that who they are today is not who they have to be tomorrow.

It’s no surprise that they are easier to work with, tend to take innovative concepts and implement them with more success and end up seeing greater results sooner.

So there you have it, five things to get rid of in 2017 to be successful in 2017!  There are still five more to discuss, but we will dive into the remaining five in the next blog post.

Part 2 of this series we will cover the remaining 5 things to stop doing to be successful in 2017. They are:

6.     Stop Searching for a “Quick Fix”

7.     Stop Needing to Control Everything

8.     Don’t Say Yes to Things that Don’t Support Your Goals

9.     Let Go of Toxic People in Your Life

10. Give Up Your Need to Be Liked

Stay tuned!

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